So HK is pretty well known for it’s luxury shopping malls (and luxury hotels) and if you’ve ever wandered around Central, along Canton Road then you’d have seen the luxury brands that call Canton Road home. They are also some of the largest stores that I have ever seen! Chanel and Hermès are among the many who actually employ security guards who let people in one by one, as if they’re night clubs- red rope and all! I also visited Elements mall in Kowloon which is full to the brim with luxury brands and with it’s convenient transportation links to the mainland, it definitely caters towards Chinese tourism. The mall also boasts amazing, hotel like bathrooms (think hand creams and magazines), the largest cinema in HK (complete with vibrating seats and speakers in the headrests) and situated next to the exclusive W hotel. You get the picture! However, HK is also well known for the other extreme, where you can really grab a bargain if you look hard enough.
Since the lovely people over at So Feminine set me a little style challenge to see how much I could get for £50 (which they very kindly sent my way- thank you so much!), I decided to see what goodies I could buy in HK. So armed with HK$640…I hit the shops and this is what I ended up with!
The dress was bought from Causeway Place on George Street in Causeway Bay. The scalloped bag was also from there too. This is one of many ‘youth’ malls that can be found in Causeway Bay, it’s slightly cheaper than the others found in the area and one of my favourites. These malls feature independent designers, stores that stock Japanese/Korean fashion and accessories all housed in tiny little shops seen below. These shops are fun to browse and usually open mid afternoon, so don’t be too surprised if you find the shop assistants eating their lunch or applying their make up when you arrive! Sometimes you can bargain with them but often you’ll walk in and they’ll tell you that there is anything from 10% to 30% off the items.
Another one of these malls is Island Beverly which is located opposite SOGO department store so it’s pretty much unmissable. In the photo below it’s the building with all the flags. On the same side as Island Beverly and about 6/7 shops down is Laforet Mall which I mentioned in this post.
Of course if you’re in Causeway Bay then almost everyone visits Times Square which has some luxury brands but there are some affordable shops too. However, my favourite thing to do there is browse the book store, Page One on the top floor which has the hugest selection of Japanese magazines.
The shacks you can see at the bottom of the photo were part of a Harry Potter/Diagon Alley promotion!
One of the things on my list of things to do was to visit Langham Place in Mong Kok to check out Monki. Surprisingly, I didn’t go crazy in there and only bought a t-shirt and a skirt and of course, the obligatory changing room shot. After seeing HK bloggers take shots inside the changing rooms, I was keen to do the same!
While in Mong Kok I bought the blue blouse from the Argyle Centre on Nathan Road. Here you’ll find teens shopping for the latest Japanese fashion while eating noodles from a bag, often you’ll find pictures from ViVi pinned next to similar styled products. It’s far cheaper than any of the malls in Causeway Bay. It’s definitely a little on the chaotic side but it’s fun to browse! My sis bought some really cheap false lashes from here.
The Instax film was found at Kwai Chung Plaza in Kwai Chung (Kwai Fong MTR). This shopping mall is a little markety selling everything from phone covers, second hand school books, hair accessories and food. It definitely has quite a local vibe. The film was cheapest here (but only by a few dollars compared to the Computer mall in Mong Kok). You can definitely grab some bargains but it’s also a bit hit and miss here and it’s further out on the MTR. Still, I was pretty pleased to grab these films as one pack sets me back £10 in the UK.
A few stops before Kwai Chung on the MTR is Lai Chi Kok. Here you’ll find Sunny City which is a fashion wholesalers, the kind of fashion you might find in the little youth malls that I spoke about before. On Saturdays it’s open to the public and as you can imagine it was crazy busy! However, if you are determined to shop then you might find a few pieces. It’s definitely a place where you end up moving with the crowd even if you don’t want to. I’d recommend visiting late afternoon when the crowds have dispersed a little.
Granville Road in Tsim Tsa Tsui (TST) is definitely worth a visit and is essentially, a road full of shops. There are a couple of HK stores along here but they are mainly of the outlet variety selling current fashions for cheap! Obviously, with places like these you might compromise on quality but in the past, I’ve bought things from here that I still wear today!
However, if you want a more peaceful shopping experience then worth a mention is City Plaza in Tai Koo Shing. There are so many other malls in HK but I visited this one a lot because there are some decent restaurants located here. It’s a spacious mall and not overly crowded and here you’ll find the likes of Uniqlo, Japanese Dept. store Apita and HK dept. Store, Wing On. It also houses one of my favourite stores, Muji which is one of their anchor stores in the mall (it’s that big!). It also sells snacks which is one thing I wish that the UK stores would stock! All the Ice Rinks in HK are located in shopping malls and City Plaza has one of them.
I have to admit that one of my favourite things to do is browse supermarkets. Particularly the Japanese ones that are everywhere in HK. My favourite is Jusco (another Japanese dept. store) which is next to City Plaza. Here, I found some crazy grapes which are priced at $329 which is £26! Apparently they are super sweet and graded quite high by Japanese standards.
Above you can see white bitter melon (definitely not my favourite Asian delicacy) and very convenient packs of ingredients for Chinese soups.
I keep ending these posts with pictures of my family but here we are outside Harbour City over at TST. Harbour City is essentially, a luxury mall and I definitely had to look the other way when I walked past the likes of Mulberry only to look into the windows of Y-3 round the corner. Worth a mention is ‘Ocean Terminal’ part of the mall which to my delight, I found Japanese brands such as Snidel and Hysteric Glamour. Certainly fun to browse but a little pricier than my usual bargain buys so I left empty handed. Since it’s such a big mall, there are definitely some affordable shops in there, so it’s worth having a browse at least. Shopping aside, I’d recommend the view from here, especially near the Star Ferry as the view of Hong Kong island is amazing.
Shopping post done…now all that’s left is the food!